AP News

Rio 2016 fires its chief operations officer


RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — The Rio 2016 Olympic committee fired its chief operations officer on Wednesday and will try to fill the position with an official with previous experience of Olympic Games.

Roderlei Generali was fired just a month before he was expected to be among the Rio 2016 members traveling to the London Games as an observer. He's the second high-ranking official to leave the local organizing team this year.

The organizing committee's press office initially said Generali resigned to pursue new professional interests, but Rio 2016 communications director Carlos Villanova told The Associated Press that it decided to make the change to try to find someone with past Olympic experience.

Generali's responsibilities included directing the planning and execution of activities in infrastructure, transportation, technology and control services of sports and non-sports venues.

There was no time frame to hire a replacement for Generali, who was one of three senior officials under CEO Leonardo Gryner. He had been in the position since April 2011.

The committee said a new chief operations officer does not need to be hired before the Rio 2016 members travel to London to try to learn from the team organizing the 2012 games.

In February, the head of security and the chief commercial officer of the 2016 Rio Olympic committee both quit.

Security director Luiz Fernando Correa stepped down because of an investigation into fraud allegations by the public prosecutor's office, but later returned to the team.

Chief commercial officer Flavio Pestana left for undisclosed personal reasons. He had replaced Maggie Sanchez, who was fired in 2011. His position remains open and is being temporarily managed by Gryner.

Rio is preparing to host the first Olympic Games in South America.


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